The Bristol Impact Fund

The Bristol Impact Fund

What the Bristol Impact Fund is

In 2017 Bristol City Council set out a new strategic approach to grant investment aiming to tackle inequality. This brought together 8 of the council’s grant funds to create a new programme called the Bristol Impact Fund (BIF).

This programme offered:

  • four-year grant funding to Voluntary, Community and Social Enterprise (VCSE) organisations in the city 
  • smaller grants for 18 months to encourage new ideas and involvement from more diverse communities

Bristol Impact Fund first round, 2017 to 2021

The first round of the Bristol Impact Fund provided grant investment to projects that deliver support to people facing disadvantage and inequality in the city, and aimed to: 

  • reduce disadvantage and inequality 
  • improve health and wellbeing 
  • increase resilience 

The first round of the Bristol Impact Fund has now finished. We will publish an evaluation of the fund in Spring 2022.

Bristol Impact Fund second round, 2021 to 2025

The goal of the second round of Bristol Impact Fund is to grow the power of local communities that experience the greatest inequality.   

The second round of Bristol Impact Fund has a budget of £1.45 million in year 1 and then £1.65 million for years 2, 3 and 4 each, totalling £6.4 million over 4 years.

Over these 4 years, the Bristol Impact Fund aims to help equalities-led groups, neighbourhood communities and people experiencing the greatest inequality to: 

  • self-organise and pursue collective priorities
  • access trusted, empowering support
  • build strong organisations taking forward community priorities  
  • collaborate and bring about meaningful changes 

Types of grants available

Medium or large grants

The deadline for applications for the second round of Bristol Impact Fund medium or large grant has now passed and the funding has been awarded.

Find the 40 organisations that have been successful in their bid for grants in this second round (pdf, 168KB) (opens new window) .

Medium and large grants will run for the full 4-year funding period, from 1 October 2021 to 30 September 2025.

Small grants 

The purpose of the small grants fund is to encourage new ideas and involvement from more diverse communities.

New small grants will start on 1 July 2022. 

Small grants are between £2,500 and £10,000 per year. 

There'll be two funding rounds of small grants, each lasting 18 months and with £150,000 available in each round: 

  • round 1 is from July 2022 to December 2023
  • round 2 is from January 2024 to June 2025

Apply for a grant

The Bristol Impact Fund 2 - Small Grants

The Bristol Impact Fund 2 - Small Grants is open for applications.

The second Bristol Impact Fund (BIF 2) puts community building at the forefront of our response to tackling inequality in the city.

The Small Grants fund aims to fund community groups to build capacity in communities that have experienced the greatest inequality and empower them to act on the issues that matter most to their communities.

How to apply

To support you with your application, see:

To apply, email your completed application to investmentandgrants@bristol.gov.uk by 12 noon on Friday 8 April 2022.

We will not accept applications received after this date.

Information events

Events will have information about:

  • the Bristol Impact Fund: growing the power of communities - small grants
  • funding priorities
  • funding eligibility
  • how and when to apply

The sessions will be held on Zoom on:

  • Thursday 10 March, from 9:30am to 10:30am
  • Tuesday 15 March, from 3pm to 4pm

To book your place, visit Bristol Impact Fund 2 - Small Grants Information Event Tickets.

If you cannot go to any of the sessions, download the PowerPoint presentation we'll use at the sessions.

Support for the sector

Voscur and Black Southwest Network (BSWN) are offering support to VCSE groups with their applications.

Voscur will be providing a range of resources and online briefings and support sessions. Book these at www.voscur.org and find out more at Bristol Impact Fund 2 – Small Grants.

BSWN will be providing targeted support with applications for the Bristol Impact Fund for Black and Minorities led VCSE organisations. To express your interest, email Mina on mina@bswn.org.uk.

Baseline standards

We've developed a set of baseline standards to protect our investment in the voluntary and community sector and make sure that all council funded organisations are well managed and provide good quality services.

All Bristol Impact Funded organisations are required to meet these standards, or to work towards them within the first 6 months of the programme.

You can find out more about this in the guidance on how to apply.

What we have funded so far

The first round of the Bristol Impact Fund offered: 

  • medium or large Bristol Impact Fund  grants, funding projects for 4 years, from July 2017 to September 2021 
  • small Bristol Impact Fund  grants, funding projects for 2 years, from July 2017 to June 2019, and January 2020 to December 2021 

The second round of the Bristol Impact Fund offered medium or large Bristol Impact Fund  grants, funding projects for 4 years, from October 2021 to September 2025.

Since its launch, 70 organisations have received grants and 7,000 volunteers have been involved in projects that have: 

  • reduced financial, food and fuel poverty 
  • tackled unemployment 
  • improved people’s access to technology 
  • enabled people to better participate in their community 
  • reduced social isolation 
  • improved wellbeing

You can find details on projects that: 

Evaluation 

In 2020 we commissioned an independent evaluation of the first 2 years of the Bristol Impact Fund (pdf, 857KB) (opens new window) to show the impact the funded projects are having.

VCS Prospectus 

Our approach to grant funding in the first round of Bristol Impact Fund is explained in the: 

If  you any have questions, email investmentandgrants@bristol.gov.uk